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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
Thousands of scientists in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are about to lose their jobs as a result of the...
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
- About Us
Breast Cancer Group Snubs Pork
12 November 1996 7:00 pm
It may be heretical for a lobby group to turn aside a windfall from Congress--but that's exactly what some breast cancer activists have done.
A federal panel composed of activists and research leaders voted unanimously last week to turn down $14.75 million Congress had earmarked for public health projects under a National Action Plan on Breast Cancer (NAPBC) at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Instead, the panel said that nearly all the money should be spent on peer-reviewed research. The panel suggested that a token amount ($750,000) be kept for the action plan, along with last year's unspent funds (about $4 million). The rest, they said, should go to the National Cancer Institute for science.
The vote took place in NAPBC's steering committee, which is co-chaired by activist Frances Visco, president of the National Breast Cancer Coalition, and Susan Blumenthal, director of the Office on Women's Health at HHS. When the panel met to consider how to divvy up the 1997 funds, it was clear that Blumenthal and Visco were on a collision course. Blumenthal wanted to use the 1997 congressional money on a broad initiative aimed at educating professionals on breast cancer, making it easier for women to get mammograms, and launching special investigations of local ``hot spots'' where the incidence of breast cancer is high. Visco and other members of the committee feared these efforts would lead to a permanent breast cancer bureaucracy, and opposed them. The Visco contingent won.
After the vote, Blumenthal said she recognized that it reflected ``a genuine difference in philosophy,'' and that members of the panel seemed to have aligned themselves with government officials who have a ``vested interest'' in funding basic research. It was, she added, ``a missed opportunity.'' Visco's response: ``It may have been a missed opportunity for Susan Blumenthal, but not for breast cancer research.'' Now it's up to HHS Secretary Donna Shalala to decide what will happen to the $14.75 million.